Synopses & Reviews
Piercing the larger than life Teddy Roosevelt myth Burns (1920) a former correspondent for NBC News and Today explores the personal side of the energetic rambunctious war hero and politician and his doting relationship with his youngest child Quentin. Burns begins as the Spanish American war percolates in 1897 with a combative “Teedie” eager to test his valor in battle; Roosevelt described war as “a supreme test of a man’s character.” Roosevelt a father of six children chose the fragile Quentin as his favorite. The future leader of the Rough Riders recalled his own tough illness prone childhood and how he overcame his ailments through strenuous exercise. War fame propelled Roosevelt from one top government post to another until his selection as William McKinley’s running mate in 1900 (and his ascension to the presidency upon McKinley’s assassination) but he continued to make quality time for his family. Burns crafts his work by balancing Roosevelt’s monumental achievements against his serious character flaws. He also holds Roosevelt responsible for lobbying for the U.S. to enter WWI a war that claimed the life of his beloved son. Burns’s unique stirring account of America’s most colorful president allows Teddy Roosevelt the man and father to step off the page. Agent: Don Fehr Trident Media Group. (Feb.) " Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
"An entertaining and informative look at a pivotal period. Downright fascinating.
"Burns delivers history with flair and vividness." The Wall Street Journal
"A work of genuine historical research, colorful personality, intellectual sophistication, heft, and
durable interest." Vanity Fair
"A fascinating work about a remarkable year. Delightfully readable." Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Burns's vigorous narrative is rich in genuinely engaging anecdote. He so clearly appreciates
history's sweep." The Los Angeles TImes
Theodore Roosevelt is one of the most fascinating and written-about presidents in American history--yet the most poignant tale about this larger-than-life man has never been told.
More than a century has passed since Theodore Roosevelt was in the White House, but he still continues to fascinate. Never has a more exuberant man been our nation's leader. He became a war hero, reformed the NYPD, busted the largest railroad and oil trusts, passed the Pure Food and Drug Act, created national parks and forests, won the Nobel Peace Prize, and built the Panama Canal to name just a few.
Yet it was the cause he championed the hardest America's entry in to WWI that would ultimately divide and destroy him. His youngest son, Quentin, his favorite, would die in an air fight. How does looking at Theodore's relationship with his son, and understanding him as a father, tell us something new about this larger-than-life-man? Does it reveal a more human side? A more hypocritical side? Or simply, if tragically, a nature so surprisingly sensitive, despite the bluster, that he would die of a broken heart?
Roosevelt's own history of boyhood illnesses made him so aware of was like to be a child in pain, that he could not bear the thought of his own children suffering. The Roosevelts were a family of pillow-fights, pranks, and "scary bear." And it was the baby, Quentin the frailest who worried his father the most. Yet in the end, it was he who would display, in his brief life, the most intellect and courage of all.
About the Author
Eric Burns is a former correspondent for NBC News and the TODAY Show. For ten years he was the host of the top-rated "Fox News Watch," and he has won an Emmy for media criticism. He is the author of 1920: The Year that Made the Decade Roar, Infamous Scribblers,